STRICKLAND v. NO DEFENDANT LISTED
OPINION. Signed by Chief Judge Jerome B. Simandle on 3/9/17. (jbk, )
UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT
DISTRICT OF NEW JERSEY
SABRINA LINSEY STRICKLAND,
HONORABLE JEROME B. SIMANDLE
No. 16-cv-06363 (JBS-AMD)
CAMDEN COUNTY JAIL,
Sabrina Linsey Strickland, Plaintiff Pro Se
500 Loch Lomond Drive
Sicklerville, NJ 08081
SIMANDLE, Chief District Judge:
Plaintiff Sabrina Linsey Strickland seeks to bring a
civil rights complaint pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for
allegedly unconstitutional conditions of confinement. Complaint,
Docket Entry 1. Although Plaintiff does not name a defendant in
the caption or in § I(B) of her Complaint, this Court will
construe Plaintiff’s Complaint as asserting claims against
Camden County Jail (“CCJ”), based on Plaintiff’s allegations
against “Camden County Jail” in § III(A) of her Complaint.
Section 1915(e)(2) requires a court to review
complaints prior to service in cases in which a plaintiff is
proceeding in forma pauperis. The Court must sua sponte dismiss
any claim that is frivolous, is malicious, fails to state a
claim upon which relief may be granted, or seeks monetary relief
from a defendant who is immune from such relief. This action is
subject to sua sponte screening for dismissal under 28 U.S.C. §
1915(e)(2)(B) because Plaintiff is proceeding in forma pauperis.
For the reasons set forth below, the Court will dismiss the
Complaint with prejudice for failure to state a claim. 28 U.S.C.
Plaintiff’s Complaint states in its entirety: “I
wasn’t giving [sic] my medication.” Complaint § III(C).
Plaintiff alleges “mental issue” injuries. Id. § IV.
The Complaint does not identify the date(s) or time(s)
of the event(s) giving rise to Plaintiff’s claim(s). Id. §
Plaintiff does not specify or otherwise describe any
requested relief. Id. § V (blank).
To survive sua sponte screening under 28 U.S.C.
1915(e)(2) for failure to state a claim, the complaint must
allege “sufficient factual matter” to show that the claim is
facially plausible. Fowler v. UPMS Shadyside, 578 F.3d 203, 210
(3d Cir. 2009) (citation omitted). “A claim has facial
plausibility when the plaintiff pleads factual content that
allows the court to draw the reasonable inference that the
defendant is liable for the misconduct alleged.” Fair Wind
Sailing, Inc. v. Dempster, 764 F.3d 303, 308 n.3 (3d Cir. 2014).
“[A] pleading that offers ‘labels or conclusions’ or ‘a
formulaic recitation of the elements of a cause of action will
not do.’” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662, 678 (2009) (quoting
Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S. 544, 555 (2007)).
Primarily, the Complaint must be dismissed as the CCJ
is not a “state actor” within the meaning of § 1983. See, e.g.,
Grabow v. Southern State Corr. Facility, 726 F. Supp. 537, 538–
39 (D.N.J. 1989) (correctional facility is not a “person” under
§ 1983). See Complaint § III(A) (“Camden County Jail”).
Accordingly, the claims against CCJ must be dismissed with
To survive sua sponte screening for failure to state a
claim1, the Complaint must allege “sufficient factual matter” to
show that the claim is facially plausible. Fowler v. UPMS
Shadyside, 578 F.3d 203, 210 (3d Cir. 2009) (citation omitted).
“A claim has facial plausibility when the plaintiff pleads
factual content that allows the court to draw the reasonable
inference that the defendant is liable for the misconduct
“The legal standard for dismissing a complaint for failure to
state a claim pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915(e)(2)(B)(ii) is the
same as that for dismissing a complaint pursuant to Federal Rule
of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6).” Samuels v. Health Dep’t, No. 161289, 2017 WL 26884, slip op. at *2 (D.N.J. Jan. 3, 2017)
(citing Schreane v. Seana, 506 F. App’x 120, 122 (3d Cir.
2012)); Allah v. Seiverling, 229 F.3d 220, 223 (3d Cir. 2000));
Mitchell v. Beard, 492 F. App’x 230, 232 (3d Cir. 2012)
(discussing 28 U.S.C. § 1997e(c)(1)); Courteau v. United States,
287 F. App’x 159, 162 (3d Cir. 2008) (discussing 28 U.S.C. §
alleged.” Fair Wind Sailing, Inc. v. Dempster, 764 F.3d 303, 308
n.3 (3d Cir. 2014). “[A] pleading that offers ‘labels or
conclusions’ or ‘a formulaic recitation of the elements of a
cause of action will not do.’” Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662,
678 (2009) (quoting Bell Atlantic Corp. v. Twombly, 550 U.S.
544, 555 (2007)). Moreover, while pro se pleadings are liberally
construed, “pro se litigants still must allege sufficient facts
in their complaints to support a claim.” Mala v. Crown Bay
Marina, Inc., 704 F.3d 239, 245 (3d Cir. 2013) (citation
omitted) (emphasis added).
There are not enough facts for the Court to infer
Plaintiff was denied adequate medical care. In order to set
forth a cognizable claim for violation of the right to adequate
medical care during incarceration, a plaintiff must allege: (1)
a serious medical need; and (2) behavior on the part of prison
officials that constitutes deliberate indifference to that need.
See Estelle v. Gamble, 429 U.S. 97, 106 (1976); Natale v. Camden
Cnty. Corr. Facility, 318 F.3d 575, 582 (3d Cir. 2003). A mere
assertion that Plaintiff was not given medication (Complaint §
III(C)) is insufficient to meet the pleading standard in the
absence of any facts. If Plaintiff wishes to pursue this claim,
Plaintiff should provide facts in an amended complaint
supporting both of these requirements of an inadequate medical
Plaintiff may be able to amend the Complaint to
particularly identify adverse conditions that were caused by
specific state actors, that caused Plaintiff to endure genuine
privations and hardship over an extended period of time, and
that were excessive in relation to their purposes. To that end,
the Court shall grant Plaintiff leave to amend the Complaint
within 30 days of the date of this order.2
Plaintiff is further advised that any amended
complaint must plead specific facts regarding the conditions of
confinement. In the event Plaintiff files an amended complaint,
Plaintiff must plead sufficient facts to support a reasonable
inference that a constitutional violation has occurred in order
to survive this Court’s review under § 1915.
Plaintiff should note that when an amended complaint
is filed, the original complaint no longer performs any function
in the case and cannot be utilized to cure defects in the
amended complaint, unless the relevant portion is specifically
incorporated in the new complaint. 6 Wright, Miller & Kane,
Federal Practice and Procedure 1476 (2d ed. 1990) (footnotes
omitted). An amended complaint may adopt some or all of the
allegations in the original complaint, but the identification of
the particular allegations to be adopted must be clear and
The amended complaint shall be subject to screening prior to
explicit. Id. To avoid confusion, the safer course is to file an
amended complaint that is complete in itself. Id. The amended
complaint may not adopt or repeat claims that have been
dismissed with prejudice by the Court.
For the reasons stated above, the Complaint is: (a)
dismissed with prejudice as to the CCJ; and (b) dismissed
without prejudice for failure to state a claim. An appropriate
March 9, 2017
s/ Jerome B. Simandle
JEROME B. SIMANDLE
Chief U.S. District Judge
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